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In accordance with the recent mandate from Oregon Governor Kate Brown, masks are required during Open-Air Cinema at OMSI. Masks continue to be required for all staff and visitors at the Portland Art Museum, including Venice VR Expanded.

Directed by Elia Kazan

United States 1957 126 mins. In English

A parable about the dangers of media sensationalism, the problems with “15-minute” fame culture, and unchecked greed, Kazan’s film came at the tail end of a string of masterpieces—among them A Streecar Named Desire, On the Waterfront, and East of Eden—and is a scathing indictment of the power of the media in American culture. From a script by long-time collaborator Budd Schulberg, Face follows the meteoric rise of folk singer Larry “Lonesome” Rhodes (Andy Griffith) as he moves from local drunkard to regional celebrity to national fame (with attendant political influence) due to his magnetic personality and “folk hero” persona. Behind the scenes, Lonesome is disparaging of his fans, writing them off as easily manipulated, unintelligent masses—a viewpoint which both shocks and disappoints Marcia Jeffries (Patricia Neal), a producer who sprang Lonesome from prison in the first place. A film that “speaks volumes about the media’s complicit involvement with corrupt governments owned by faceless corporations. . . A Face in the Crowd is, in fact, as fresh and relevant as tomorrow’s headlines.”—Thomas Beltzer, Senses of Cinema.

Genres: Drama

Appears in: Print the Legend

The Northwest Film Center recognizes and honors the Indigenous peoples of this region on whose ancestral lands the museum now stands. These include the Willamette Tumwater, Clackamas, Kathlemet, Molalla, Multnomah and Watlala Chinook Peoples and the Tualatin Kalapuya who today are part of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde, and many other Native communities who made their homes along the Columbia River. We also want to recognize that Portland today is a community of many diverse Native peoples who continue to live and work here. We respectfully acknowledge and honor all Indigenous communities—past, present, future—and are grateful for their ongoing and vibrant presence.